Blessed is the man
who walks not in the counsel of the wicked,
nor stands in the way of sinners,
nor sits in the seat of scoffers;
but his delight is in the law of the LORD,
and on his law, he meditates day and night.
This Psalm prefaces the following 149 Psalms of the two paths in life that the book unpacks using laments, poetry, and stories. This Psalm states that "Blessed" is where a person walks, stands, or sits. Does He know this for everyone? Does He know all of our ways? For Him to be God, the answer is "yes."
This makes some feel uncomfortable and others feel secure. The God of creation knows what I am doing, when I am doing it, and with whom I do it.
O LORD, you have searched me and known me!
You know when I sit down and when I rise up;
you discern my thoughts from afar.
You search out my path and my lying down
and are acquainted with all my ways.
Even before a word is on my tongue,
behold, O LORD, you know it altogether.
You hem me in, behind and before,
and lay your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
it is high; I cannot attain it.
This is crazy to imagine, but we don't have a choice in the matter. God knows our ways because He created this to be as it is. According to God, life and how I live it, matters. I know this is not a favorable thought for the world in which we live. The reality of life is that we didn't create ourselves and our world; all of this and more is a gift from God. We are to live towards Him.
I have set the LORD always before me;
because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken.
Who do I walk with? I walk alongside all kinds of people in different contexts. The question is to go deeper. Who do I get my counsel from? Whoever I am listening to is the one informing me about life. This also incorporates what I am listening to or reading. Social media is a consideration here. Who is informing me and who am I walking alongside in the social media world? This is my counsel. This counsel is walking alongside my life informing me how to live in this world. It informs my decisions and critiques of others, situations, and interpretations of my life. God takes notice not for punishment but more for concern. It reminds me of when my kids got their first cell phones. I was overseeing them to protect them, and of course, they didn't see it like that.
Who do I stand with and sit with? Who are they I partner with their worldview, their politics, or their theology. Who I stand for is who I live with, and who I invest in and care for. These are the ones I identify with. This is at work, with hobbies and those I just 'hang' with. One of life's hardest ventures is finding a church home. Why? Because these are people I will stand with, break bread with, and serve with. These are those I identify and journey with in life. I relax with them and our lives mingle. Their lives impact me in ways that impress me on how to live or not. Why is this important to God? He desires the best for me and you in all things and all ways. Even so much as to be concerned with who I walk, stand, and sit with. Amazing! The infinite God loves me/you so intentionally to care for such things that seem so little in our lives.
I don't like to be accountable for my life when I know I am doing wrong, but I love it when my life pleases the One who created me. My life feels more secure under His care with His oversight being for my good and yours. He points us in the way to go with the promise of what my life will look like.
but his delight is in the law of the LORD,
and on his law, he meditates day and night. He is like a tree
planted by streams of water
that yields its fruit in its season,
and its leaf does not wither.
In all that he does, he prospers.
Instead of walking, standing, and seating myself with those things or others opposing God's ways, I saturate myself in His word and those who promote the same with their lives. This feeds my soul. This day could feel like light, or like the darkest night of my soul but His living word meets my life right where it is at this day. Regardless of the sphere about me, His word feeds me, it delights me, and I draw life from it. I walk, I stand and seat myself in His word.
Many, including myself, have struggled with personal devotions and daily reading. If this is the case, that means there is substance to the opportunity in front of us. Substance means there is something substantial to this challenge - a purpose and intent that I am invited to grow through. Is it worth pushing through? I believe so because of verse 3.
The growth of my life will look like a tree producing fruit in the seasons of my life with leaves that don't wither. In all he does he prospers or in all of life he is complete. What?! Is this possible? If He created the universe and all its contents, including me with all of my concerns about who I walk, stand, and sit with, I would say it is very much possible. I am willing to push through to see if He is a God of His word.
Psalms 1:6a for the LORD knows the way of the righteous...
Ends with being known